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September 13, 2021

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Photo of the Week

Photo of the week
Band practice at Tenaya Middle School

Back to School with Classified Employees Video

Video of the Week
Edison Graduate Mekiyah Rabbon: Robotics Success Story Video

Dates to Know

September 15 (workshop) Board Meetings (see website for time)
Board of Education


Welcome to Community Zone, an e-newsletter from the Fresno Unified School District featuring news of the district and schools. Sign up to receive this newsletter every two weeks. Questions? Contact

Community News

District Leaders Featured in Podcast

Family Leads podcast=

Hear from Fresno Unified leaders in the Fresno Unified School District Family Leads podcast.
Listen to FUSD Podcasts on Apple Podcasts
Listen to FUSD Podcasts on Spotify

60 Seconds with Fresno Unified

60 Seconds gif

The latest 60 Seconds with Fresno Unified video highlights back-to-school rallies, school murals by Summer Mural Camp students and a reminder to look on for COVID information and for everyone to do their part to reduce the spread of COVID to keep students in  in school every day.
Fresno Unified News in 60 Seconds Video

District Online Newspaper Available

Check out the September edition of Building Futures, the district’s digital newspaper. The newest edition features information on back to school, COVID guidelines, employee spotlights and more.
September Building Futures

Superintendent Board Remarks from September 8, 2021

Superintendent Bob Nelson
• Superintendent recognized September as Suicide Prevention Month and his gratitude to our team as we prioritize mental health across our system. Suicide, much like other mental health conditions, can affect anyone regardless of age, gender, or background. Every year thousands of individuals die by suicide, leaving behind their friends and family members to navigate the tragedy of loss. About 80% of teens who die by suicide show warning signs, 90% of teens who die by suicide have another mental health concern, and suicide is the second leading cause of death in people ages 10-34. In efforts to support our students and families we have a team of FUSD school psychologists and school social workers who are providing prevention information and training to our students and staff about suicide this month as well as providing ongoing crisis support and interventions during and after a tragedy. Our district has an after-hours crisis team to respond to immediate needs of students, we’ve steadily increased our staffing and social emotional supports across the district, and we’ve expanded partnerships with CareSolace, TalkSpace, and more to support students, families and staff. If you or anyone you know may be struggling with mental health, please don’t hesitate to send a referral to our teams by clicking the “social emotional wellness” icon on our homepage at, or by calling the Central Valley Suicide Hotline at 1-888-506-5991.

• We are actively hiring substitutes across the district. We need substitute teachers to help ensure our students have a high quality teacher each day, we need substitute bus drivers to get our students safely and efficiently to and from school, we need substitute nutrition services workers to keep our students fed whether they’re learning in-person or at home, we need substitute paraprofessionals to help us in the classroom and as we expand our after school programs, and we need substitute clerical staff to help us keep up with contact tracing across the district. Our teams have been working incredibly hard in this area, both through recruitment and through partnering with outside organizations. Just to give some context, we have almost 1,800 substitutes in our system right now, with 1,000 being certificated and the other almost 800 being classified subs. Of that list, less than one third are taking regular sub days with us this year. We are making it work and have been deploying certificated and classified managers to school sites and classrooms, but the need is real. If you’ve ever wanted to serve our students, we need you now more than ever. We need our “coalition of the willing” with us side by side as we serve our students, in yet another difficult year due to this pandemic. If you’re interested in serving, or know someone who might be, please have them call or text us at (559) 289-4599 or head to our website to apply online.

• Administration of this year’s Confidential Family Survey will begin later this month. This annual survey collects important household and income data from identified Fresno Unified families. While this information remains confidential, the results are crucial to determining district and school funding through the Local Control Funding Formula. This year, the CFS will be distributed electronically, and will be sent through a pre-populated URL through student email. So please keep an eye out in your student’s email for that link and participate!

• Fresno Unified is currently surveying families, staff, and students in grades 3-12 on a handful of school climate and culture indicators. This survey is an opportunity for you and your student to tell us about your experiences with their school and how we can better support your student’s learning. Promoting a positive school climate is central to our district’s vision of success for each student. Students will complete their surveys during class during the weeks of late September and early October. Families and staff will complete their surveys online between September 27 and October 15. We look forward to receiving important input from you, your students, and our staff about the climate and culture of our schools. The data we collect will help our schools to take action toward improving student outcomes and ensuring that your child feels connected to their school. For more information, check your email or contact your child’s school directly. Additionally, you may visit our district and school websites for more information, including videos on “Family Voice Matters” and a “How-To” walkthrough of the survey experience.

• Also, we are currently gathering feedback from our Fresno Unified family to help support our planning for ESSER III funds and additional LCFF funds – take a look at this quick video to find out how to make your voice heard. (Watch the video here). Thank you to our State and Federal office for conducting this outreach – and please teachers, staff, students, and parents, head over to the ThoughtExchange to share your ideas.

Full Board Meeting Recap

School Buzz

Duncan Hosts 9/11 Ceremony

Duncan students with U.S. flag Duncan Polytechnical High School held a ceremony September 10 to commemorate the 20th anniversary of 9/11. The event not only honored the memory of those who lost their lives but paid tribute to local veterans, police officers and firefighters. The ceremony featured the Duncan Air Force Junior ROTC color guard and cadets, as well as leadership students with American flags.

Roosevelt Public Service Students Investigate Biomes

Roosevelt biomes Roosevelt High School’s Public Service Pathway students are learning out to investigate the effect of different biomes on biological evidence. Students recreated the five biomes of California in small plastic aquariums. Students were tasked to work in groups and design their assigned biome to fit into a plastic aquarium. Students will observe a piece of metal with simulated blood and a fingerprint for any changes over time. By the end of the project students will learn what biome can support the preservation of biological evidence such as blood and a fingerprint. 

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